Beyond Social Gaming, Jamie McDonald

I skipped out on this one half way through to check out the “How to get into games” panel, but it was a fairly straightforward message. Singstar’s producer Pauline Bozek did a bit on how they’ve updated it for the PS3 – basically integrating the social aspects which have naturally surrounded the game in the past into the game. For example, right now many people video themselves having Singstar parties and upload them to share – this is now integrated into the game. Secondly, they’ve integrated an iTunes-like music purchasing interface into the game, to allow people to customise their gameplay experience. Up until now, they have been milking Singstar by releasing a variety of track listings – almost like albums. Now they’ve killed that, but replaced it with a practically unlimited money making opportunity by allowing users to buy individual tracks.

I caught a brief glimpse of the PS3 home interface as well – again it looks like Sony are trying to push the integration aspect. They want users to use their virtual interface to be the social community/lobby aspect to all of their multiplayer games. A laudable goal, but I can’t help but think that it will take a while to smooth out the rough edges of the new style of play. XBox-Live took years to mature into the capable interface it has now, I don’t see that being any different for Sony. However, if they do it right, and the poor uptake of the PS3 doesn’t kill it first, I think it’s got real potential. Certainly Sony seem to be in it for the long haul, rather than the short term success.

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Last modified: February 06 2020.